Kuala Lumpur is the capital city of Malaysia and one of the most culturally diverse cities in Southeast Asia.
Home to almost seven million residents, this vibrant city is a melting pot of race, culture and religion.
We only had two days to explore but we managed to squeeze in as much as we could.
Here’s our 7 things to do in Kuala Lumpur:
1. The Petronas Twin Towers
No trip to Kuala Lumpur is complete without checking out the iconic Petronas Twin Towers. Standing 452 metres tall they’re a pretty spectacular sight and worth seeing both during the day and night.
You can get a great view of the buildings for free at KLCC public park – a 50 acre garden next to Suria KLCC Shopping Centre. It’s the perfect place to chill out for an hour or two after a busy day of sightseeing.
Don’t miss the daily water fountain show at Lake Symphony (we’d recommend the music show which takes place three times a day at 20:00pm, 21:00pm and 22:00pm.)
If you fancy getting a little closer, you can take a trip up the towers where you’ll be rewarded with incredible 360 degree views of Kuala Lumpur.
Your ticket allows you to walk across the skybridge that connects the two towers and visit the observation deck on the 89th floor. It’s easy to see why visiting the Petronas Twin Towers is one of our 7 things to do in Kuala Lumpur.
Travel Tip: Buy a ticket in advance to go up the towers from the Patronas Towers official website, where you’ll be able to choose a date and time slot rather than waiting in line.
How to get there: Click here for a map and instructions.
Price: 85 MYR per adult & 35 MYR per child, the towers are closed to visitors on Mondays.
2. Masjid Negara, the National Mosque of Malaysia
In our opinion, one of the most rewarding things about travel is the opportunity to learn about different countries and their cultures and a trip to Masjid Negara will help you do just that.
Masjid Negara located in the heart of Kuala Lumpur is the national mosque of Malaysia and has a capacity of a whopping 15,000 people.
It’s completely free to visit but you must keep your head and shoulders covered – if you’re not dressed suitably then you’ll be provided with a ‘Jubah’ to wear.
It can get super busy during prayer times so plan your visit accordingly; non-Muslim visitors can visit Monday to Sunday from 09:00am-12:00pm, 15:00pm-16:00pm and 17:30pm-18:30pm.
Travel Tip: Keep an eye out for the free guides who are happy to give you an insight into the way the Mosque runs and some of the history of Islam if you have ten minutes to spare.
How to get there: Take the train to KL Sentral, then take the KTM Komuter Train towards Kuala Lumpur Station.
3. Brickfields, Little India
Brickfields, known as Little India, is one of the best places in Kuala Lumpur to experience Indian culture.
Home to delicious Indian food and snacks, the fragrant smells and colours reminded us of our time spent in India.
Don’t leave without trying the ‘banana leaf rice,’ a traditional dish from the South of India where your meal is served on a banana leaf. We recommend heading to Vishal Food & Catering – you won’t leave disappointed!
Price: A banana leaf rice will set you back around 20 MYR.
4. Kuala Lumpur Bird Park
Located in the famous Lake Gardens, KL Bird Park is the world’s largest free flight walk-in aviary.
Over 20 acres in size, the park is home to more than 3,000 birds including ostriches, eagles and flamingos. It’s the perfect way to spend an afternoon if you’re travelling with kids making it one of our 7 things to do in Kuala Lumpur.
Travel Tip: Visit the Bird Park’s website to find out the feeding times of the birds so you can plan your visit accordingly.
Price: Entry ticket for an adult is 50 MYR and kids 41 MYR.
How to get there: The bird park is nearby the Masjid Negara Mosque, click here for full instructions.
A short walk away is KL Butterfly Park, and although we did see some beautiful butterflies and dragonflies, we thought it was overpriced and wouldn’t recommend it.
5. China Town
Kuala Lumpur’s China Town district is a lively area full of street food and market stalls.
The main street, known as Petaling Street, is famous for selling fake goods and souvenirs.
You’ll find everything here from knock-off handbags to fridge magnets, but prepare to haggle hard to bag yourself a bargain. We love wondering around local markets which is why it is one of our 7 things to do in Kuala Lumpur.
Travel Tip: Petaling Street comes to life at night, but keep your bag close and leave your valuables in your hotel as it’s a known area for pick pocketing.
How to get there: Take the PUTRA line to Pasar Seni Station and head straight, it’s about a ten minute walk.
A few minutes walk from Petaling Street is KL Central Market, a famous landmark for Malaysian culture and heritage. Here you can buy tons of authentic souvenirs, arts and crafts but there’s not so much haggling!
Nearby to Central Market is the Sri Mahamariamman temple which is the oldest Hindu temple in Kuala Lumpur boasting intricate architecture and vibrant colours. It’s free to enter but you will need to take off your shoes.
6. Bukit Bintang & Jalan Alor
Bukit Bintang is Kuala Lumpur’s entertainment district full of bars, restaurants and fancy shopping malls.
Make sure you visit Jalan Alor, a bustling road running parallel to Bukit Bintang and a foodie’s paradise.
This was our favourite place to grab dinner in Kuala Lumpur and an absolute must-visit if you’re keen on street-dining.
The road is buzzing day through night, lined with plastic chairs and tables serving up fresh food at cheap prices slotting it’s way into our top 7 things to do in Kuala Lumpur.
You’ll be approached by waiters every couple of steps trying to entice you into their restaurant, but we didn’t feel pressured – just take your time and sit down wherever you like the look of.
Most of the food on offer is Thai, Chinese and Malay. Once you’ve ordered – sit back, relax and watch the world go by on one of the busiest streets in the world.
Price: A medium sized main dish costs around 24 MYR (we’d recommend ordering a number of small dishes so you can try a bit of everything!)
How to get there: Take the metro to Bukit Bintang Station and it’s a short walk north along Jalan Bukit Bintang.
7. Merdeka Square
Merdeka Square, known as Independence Square, is where the Union Jack was lowered and the Malaysian flag raised for the first time in 1957.
You can now see the Malaysian Flag flying proudly on one of the tallest flagpoles in the world, standing at a height of 95 metres.
How to get there: From KL Sentral Station, take the Kelana Jaya Line (green line) to the Majid Jamek LRT Station and walk towards Jalan Raja.
Across the road from Merdeka Square (you can’t miss it!) is the majestic Sultun Abdul Building, where the Malaysian Declaration of Independence was signed in 1957.
Nearby and worth a visit is Masjid Jamek, the city’s oldest Mosque built in 1909. Unfortuntely the Mosque was undergoing construction during our visit, but it still looked beautiful from the outside.
Where to stay in Kuala Lumpur?
We stayed in Bukit Bintang, a lively area home to cheap to mid range hotels and in walking distance to many shops and restaurants.
China Town is backpacker friendly and a great choice if you’re on a budget. If you’re looking for something a little more fancy, the KLCC area next to the Patronas Towers is an upmarket district and home to big hotels and swanky bars.
Kuala Lumpur has an easy and efficient public transport system, so wherever you choose to stay – you’ll have no problem making your way round the city.
Have you been to Kuala Lumpur? What were your favourite things to do?
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